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Nokias Layoffs Have Big Impact in Hungary

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Nokia, a phone maker based in Finland, is getting ready to do massive layoffs, as some of your more astute readers may recall from our earlier coverage, but for those of you who did not catch it here is an excerpt:

“Nokia Siemens Networks,  a telecom equipment manufacturer based in German and Finland has recently announced it intentions to layoff a significant workers. The company is looking to get rid of workers in eight different countries, and this will mean a loss of about 17,000 jobs . Of the cut we do know that   2,900 job cuts in Germany and 1,200 in Finland. The rest of the cuts will come from workers in the other six nations that will be getting the job cuts, meaning that they will bear the brunt of it…. ‘These planned reductions are regrettable but necessary — and it is our goal to make them in a fair and responsible way, providing the support we can to employees and communities,’ NSN chief executive Rajeev Suri, said in a statement when they made the initial announcement.

The job losses will begin on the 8th of February. While the company is offering up a retraining program to help employees get through these tough time, the rest of the benefits that the workers will get from this loss will depend on the laws in their home nation. ”

Well it looks like the layoffs are have more than a minor impact on a small town in Hungary. The town, which is names Komarom,  boasts a population of about 20,000 residents and is situated in the northwest of Hungary. Nokia, as it turns out, is a major employer in the town and the layoffs are likely to have a significant impact on the local economy.

One worker, Veronika Szalai, a 27 year old who has worked for Nokia for years, talked to a reporter for Reuters and said the following about the impending layoffs:

“They only told us they will let go a mix of people, from all departments. Of course it upsets everyone. In this world a good living is hard to come by. We’ll stay as long as we can, then we may get our severance cheques… Then we’ll see.”

The plant, which has been in the town since the late 90’s has been a long term employer that have moved many workers to the area, though many still commute over the Danube river each day to get to the plant. The company is moving a number of its jobs to Asia, where the labor is cheaper. In addition the company is also dealing with a lesser amount of business. As smart phones become more and more popular the basic phones created by Nokia have been less in demand.

The company announced that over and above the 17,000 layoffs they announced last week 4,000 more jobs will be cut and about half of those will from the workers in Hungary, so as you can imagine there are going to be a lot of people in search of work.

Nokias Layoffs Have Big Impact in Hungary by
Authored by: Harrison Barnes